Kavi Mailing List Manager Help

Appendix M. List Features

Table of Contents

List Features

List Features

Here is a list of all the features available for mailing lists based on ezmlm List Type configuration options.


Archives are useful for new users or current users who may have missed recent messages and provide a record of all the content distributed through a mailing list. For more information on Kavi Mailing List Manager archives, see the Mail Archives Concepts document.

For a mailing list to have archives, the list must be based on a List Type that has archiving enabled (i.e., the '-a' switch is set in the ezmlm-make argument string). The '-a' switch works in combination with the 'B/b' and 'G/g' switches to provide different levels of email access to the raw archives. For more information, see the Ezmlm Quick Reference Guide in the Appendix.

All the default List Types have archiving enabled, but a custom List Type can be created if your organization wants a List Type that has no archives. When -A is set, no archives are created for any mailing lists based on this List Type and any settings that pertain to archives are ignored, including the Web Archive Availability setting at the list level. Archives do consume some system resources, so this is one possible reason to disable archiving when it isn't needed.


The cross-posting feature is available in all List Types with -u switch set in the ezmlm-make argument string. For more information on cross-posting, see the Edit Cross-Posters tool page help.

Deny List

A Deny List is the same thing as a kill list. It is a specialized kind of Subscriber List used to store email addresses of users who have violated list policy. When enabled (i.e., the ezmlm-make string includes the -k switch), any email messages originating from addresses on the Deny List are automatically deleted, effectively barring these users from posting to the list. Unfortunately, the user has only to acquire a new email address to work around this feature, so it isn't as useful for mailing lists that allow the public to subscribe via email as it is for lists with more restrictive subscription processes.

All Kavi-hosted websites also use the Spamhaus blocklist to filter out email originating from IP blocks of known spammers. For more information, see Virus Scanning and Spam Blocking in the Concepts documents.


A digest is created by rolling up many mailing list email into a single email. By default, a new digest is generated when 30 messages, 48 hours, or 64 kilobytes of message body text have accumulated since the last digest. Digest subscription is an alternative to regular subscription. Instead of receiving every message posted to the list singly as it comes in, digest subscribers receive multiple messages processed into a single batch periodically. When digests are enabled, users have the ability to select either a Regular or Digest subscription. A Digest subscriber has the same posting and archive retrieval permissions as a Regular subscriber.

The digest feature is enabled in all default List Types (the -d switch is set in the ezmlm-make argument string).

Instant Archiving

When new messages are posted to the list, they can be added to the web-accessible HTML archives immediately or on a periodic basis.

If this option is set to have new messages archived as soon as they are posted to the list (the -i switch is set in the ezmlm-make argument string), email threads in the Web archives are kept current. All default List Types use this setting so that newly posted messages are instantly available in the archives.

If this option is set so that new posts are added periodically, it consumes less resources, but causes some lag in new posts being added to the web-viewable archives. This can be confusing for list users who are trying to follow a thread or confirm a post. The default interval for periodic updating is one hour, so at this setting users trying to follow a thread through the archives might have an hour time-lag until the latest batch of messages in the thread become available. This is less of an issue on lists with infrequent posts.

This option is dependent on the existence of archives (i.e., the -a switch must be set). If archives do not exist, this option is ignored.

Kill List

A kill list is the same thing as a Deny List. It is enabled by setting the -k switch in the ezmlm-make argument string. The kill list feature is enabled in all default List Types. For more information, see the section on the Deny List.

MIME attachments

When this feature is disabled, email messages are sent only as plain-text messages with a US-ASCII character set encoding. Messages delivered in this format can easily be read by any mail reader software or mail archive program. The drawback is that this does not support languages that use non-Roman character sets.

When this feature is enabled, email messages can include the UTF-8 mail encoding format.

Subject Prefix

When enabled (i.e., the ezmlm-make argument string that determines list type configuration includes the -f switch), a prefix will be prepended to the email subject line of every email sent through the list. By default, the prefix is the list name enclosed in square brackets, but this can be configured for an individual list through the Edit List Text tool.

Email subject-line prefixes consume some of the limited space available in an email subject line, but are still used by many lists because the prefix is so handy for list users when sorting and filtering list messages.

Public subscription requests

If this option is set to 'Yes', lists based on this type will accept public admin requests in the form of email address commands, including requests to subscribe or unsubscribe and requests to retrieve the archives. For more information, see Email Address Commands. This setting is used for the public default list types, but not for the private types. For more information, see Default List Types.

Subscription Model

Most lists use the open subscription model, which allows users to subscribe to the list directly through the website or by email, if list rules allow it.

The closed subscription model doesn't allow users to subscribe directly. Instead, subscribers can only be added by administrators. Lists that use the closed subscription model are often called 'invitation only' lists. They are used for mailing lists that serve small, high-level groups such as an organization's board of directors, technical or marketing committees and task-oriented teams.

Trailer text

Trailer text is generally used to add information about a list, including how to unsubscribe from the list and how to get help, which helps to prevent your messages from being perceived as spam. For more information, see the section on Subscription confirmation and easy opt-out in the Concepts document What You Need to Know About Spam.

Here is an example of default trailer text:

To unsubscribe, e-mail: newsletter-unsubscribe@example.com

For additional commands, e-mail: newsletter-help@example.com

These default instructions will only work if the underlying list type is configured to accept public subscription requests. If the underlying list type is NOT configured to accept public subscription requests, the default text should be revised using the Edit List Text tool. It should include the URL for the My Mailing Lists tool on your website that can be copied and pasted into a browser window.


By default, trailer text can only be added to the end of plain text email messages, so HTML or RTF email will not include the trailer unless your website is custom-configured to support trailers in HTML or RTF format.

Who can post to the list?

This option is set in the list type to define what action is taken when list users at different levels send messages to the list. Posting access is defined by a combination of the -M/m, -O/o and -U/u switches in the ezmlm-make argument string. This is the most complex aspect of list configuration, but can be simplified by viewing the information in Posting Access Tables. To view all options at once for comparison sake, see Posting access matrix.

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